Chicken and Lentil Chili

Total Time

Prep: 20 min. Cook: 5 hours


8 servings (2-1/2 quarts)

Updated: Feb. 17, 2023
I like to make a simple, hearty slow-cooked recipe at least once a week. You can mix this up the night before and throw it into the crock on your way out the door. Use hotter tomatoes and chiles or salsa if you like more zing. —Laurie Stout-Letz, Bountiful, Utah
Chicken and Lentil Chili Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breast halves (6 ounces each)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (15 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 can (10 ounces) diced tomatoes and green chiles
  • 1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 cup (about 5 ounces) frozen corn
  • 1 cup mild salsa
  • 1 can (4 to 4-1/2 ounces) chopped green chiles
  • 2/3 cup dried lentils, rinsed
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Tortilla chips, shredded Mexican cheese and sliced olives, optional


  1. In a 5- or 6-qt. slow cooker, combine the first 16 ingredients. Cook, covered, on low until chicken and lentils are tender, 5-6 hours. Remove chicken; cool slightly and chop. Return chicken to slow cooker; heat through. Serve over tortilla chips and top with cheese and olives, if desired.

Can you freeze Chicken and Lentil Chili?

Freeze cooled soup mixture in freezer containers. To use, partially thaw in refrigerator overnight. Heat through in a saucepan, stirring occasionally; if necessary, add a little water.

Test Kitchen tips
  • Use rotisserie chicken in place of fresh when you are short on time.
  • For more heat, hot salsa and tomatoes can be used.
  • Lentils are a cheap way to stretch a dish. Look for them near the dried beans in the grocery store.
  • Nutrition Facts

    1-1/4 cups: 249 calories, 2g fat (0 saturated fat), 23mg cholesterol, 844mg sodium, 38g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 9g fiber), 21g protein.